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Tina Turner dies at 83

What we covered here

  • Legendary singer Tina Turner has died after a "long illness," her family said in a statement on Wednesday. She was 83.
  • Known as the "Queen of Rock 'n' Roll," Turner's mega-hits include "Proud Mary," "What's Love Got To Do With It" and "The Best."
  • She began her career as the lead singer of the Ike & Tina Turner Revue with her ex-husband before becoming a solo performer.
  • Tributes have poured in from the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Angela Bassett and Mick Jagger.
11:16 p.m. ET, May 24, 2023

Our live coverage has ended. Read more on Tina Turner’s life here, or read through the posts below.

9:03 p.m. ET, May 24, 2023

Stars tell CNN what Tina Turner meant to them

Stars are reflecting on the legacy and impact of Tina Turner with CNN. The iconic singer died peacefully Wednesday at the age of 83, her family said.
Singer and actress Sheryl Lee Ralph called Turner "an icon, a queen, a dynamic, electrifying performer."
"Every time, now, when I hear 'What's Love Got to Do With It,' I keep thinking in terms of her passing, it's got everything to do with it because this was an artist who was truly, deeply loved and who loved what she did, getting up on that stage and turning it on for her audience," Ralph told CNN's Wolf Blitzer Wednesday. "I mean Tina Turner, that's a one-in-a-million type artist."
Actress Debbie Allen speaks with CNN's Wolf Blitzer on the legacy of Tina Turner on May 24, 2023. CNN
Actress, dancer and choreographer Debbie Allen called Turner's hit song "Proud Mary" "an anthem for young Black women."
"She was like the divine feminine incarnate — this incredible Black woman who was a rockstar," Allen told Blitzer of Turner. "She just like jumped across the labels of what music she was supposed to be singing. She made it what it was."

Allen added that Turner is "an inspiration to millions of people around the world and will always be."

Ruth Pointer, the last surviving original member of the Pointer Sisters group, said she began to weep upon learning of Turner's passing Wednesday.
"I loved her so much. In my opinion, she was my queen in the music industry. She was my queen," Pointer told CNN's Erin Burnett. "I wanted to be her, you know. I tried to be her with my sisters."
Pointer, who worked with Turner and other music legends on "We are the World" in 1985, recalled seeing Turner perform several times — one of which being after Pointer had graduated from high school.

"I was never the same after that," Pointer said about the performance.

Ruth Pointer (left) and Bryan Adams speak with CNN's Erin Burnett on Tina Turner's legacy on May 24, 2023. CNN
Singer-turned-photographer Bryan Adams spoke to Turner's character.
"She was not only really kind to me in the beginning, but just fabulous to work for," Adams told Burnett.
Adams, who recorded the 1985 duet "It's Only Love" with Turner and who wrote her award-winning 1986 hit "Back Where You Started," said that being on tour with Turner "was unbelievable."
"She asked me to come and be her support act in Europe back in 1985, it changed everything for me as a solo performer," Adams said. "It really opened up everything and I will never ever be able to articulate how grateful I am for her for that."
7:54 p.m. ET, May 24, 2023

Obamas call Tina Turner "a star whose light will never fade"

Former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama released a joint statement Wednesday following the news of Tina Turner's death.
“Tina Turner was raw. She was powerful. She was unstoppable. And she was unapologetically herself—speaking and singing her truth through joy and pain; triumph and tragedy," the Obamas wrote. "Today we join fans around the world in honoring the Queen of Rock and Roll, and a star whose light will never fade.”
7:38 p.m. ET, May 24, 2023

Here are times Tina Turner made history

Aside from her talent, Tina Turner also made history over the course of her decades-long career.
Here are some of the times the iconic singer made history:
Her comeback as a solo artist in her 40s: Although she didn’t like the song at first and had to be talked into recording it, “What’s Love Got to Do With It” made her, at 44, the oldest female artist to score a No. 1 hit
Turner was the first Black artist and the first female artist to feature on the cover of Rolling Stone, according to the music publishing company BMG. Her solo works include 10 studio albums, two live albums, two soundtracks and five compilations, which in total have sold more than 100 million records. 
Turner was also among only a handful of artists to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice. Turner was first inducted into the organization, alongside her ex-husband and musical partner Ike Turner, in 1991. She was later inducted in 2021 as a solo artist.
7:00 p.m. ET, May 24, 2023

"Our forever goddess of rock 'n' roll": Oprah shares Tina Turner tribute

Oprah Winfrey reflected on her friendship with Tina Turner in a tribute shared on her official Instagram account. Winfrey wrote in the post caption that she "started out as a fan of Tina Turner, then a full-on groupie, following her from show to show around the country" with the two of them eventually becoming friends.

"She is our forever goddess of rock ‘n’ roll who contained a magnitude of inner strength that grew throughout her life. She was a role model not only for me but for the world. She encouraged a part of me I didn’t know existed," Winfrey wrote in the post featuring pictures of the two together over the years.
"Once she claimed her freedom from years of domestic abuse, her life became a clarion call for triumph. I’m grateful for her courage, for showing us what victory looks like wearing Manolo’s and a leather miniskirt. She once shared with me that when her time came to leave this earth, she would not be afraid, but excited and curious. Because she had learned how to LIVE surrounded by her beloved husband, Erwin, and friends. I am a better woman, a better human, because her life touched mine. She was indeed simply the best," Winfrey wrote.
See the full post here:
6:44 p.m. ET, May 24, 2023

Biden calls Tina Turner "a once-in-a-generation talent”

President Joe Biden offered condolences on the death of global music icon Tina Turner, calling the late musician “a once-in-a-generation talent that changed American music forever.” 
“Before she was the Queen of Rock and Roll, Tina Turner was a farmer’s daughter in Tennessee. As a child, she sang in the church choir before becoming one of the most successful recording artists of all time,” he wrote in a statement Wednesday. “Jill and I send our love and prayers to her husband Erwin, the rest of the Turner family, and fans around the world who are mourning today for the woman they agree was ‘simply the best.’"
5:36 p.m. ET, May 24, 2023

In pictures: Tina Turner throughout the years

A trailblazer, trendsetter and icon: Tina Turner will leave behind a rich legacy of culture for her contributions to the music industry.

The resilient singer said that professionally, some of her happiest moments were when she was performing her hit songs live.

"One of my early career goals was to become the first Black woman to fill stadiums around the world,” she told NBC’s Today Show in 2021. “At the time, it seemed impossible. But I never gave up, and I’m so happy I made that dream come true."
Here's a look back at Turner's life and career over the years:
Tina Turner performs in London in 1986. Andre Csillag/Shutterstock

Ike and Tina Turner perform onstage in 1964 in Dallas Fort Worth, Texas. Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Turner poses in a winged-costume in Los Angeles in 1977. Harry Langdon/Getty Images

Turner on stage in Congresgebouw, Den Haag, Netherlands, on March 27, 1982. Rob Verhorst/Redferns/Getty Images

Turner in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 1988. Dave Hogan/Getty Images

Turner performs during a 1990 concert in Versailles, France. ARNAL/Gamma-Rapho/Getty Images

Turner and Angela Bassett rehearse a song performance in 1993 for the film "What's Love Got to Do with It." Buena Vista Pictures/Everett Collection

Turner sings as part of the halftime show at Super Bowl XXXVI on January 30, 2000, in Atlanta. Paul Spinelli/AP

5:27 p.m. ET, May 24, 2023

Flowers were placed on Turner's Hollywood Walk of Fame star

A person places flowers on Turner's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Hollywood, California, on Wednesday, May 24. Patrick T. Fallon/AFPGetty Images

A floral wreath was placed on Tina Turner’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame Wednesday afternoon.

Fans gathered near her star following the news of her passing.

"I’m very blown away right now, all of us are. My family, we loved Tina Turner," Adrienne Rohas, a fan of Turner's since the 1970s, told CNN while visiting the late musician's star. "The greatest legs, the best voice and all the moves that you can get – she had them all, she’s the best.”
According to the California landmark's website, Turner received a star during an induction ceremony on August 28, 1986.
5:24 p.m. ET, May 24, 2023

Actress Angela Bassett pays tribute to Tina Turner

Turner and Bassett rehears a performance in 1993 for the film "What's Love Got to Do with It." Buena Vista Pictures/Everett Collection

Actress Angela Bassett, who was nominated for an Academy Award for her portrayal of Tina Turner in the 1993 biopic — "What's Love Got to Do with It" — paid tribute to Turner in a statement shared with CNN on Wednesday.
“How do we say farewell to a woman who owned her pain and trauma and used it as a means to help change the world? Through her courage in telling her story, her commitment to stay the course in her life, no matter the sacrifice, and her determination to carve out a space in rock and roll for herself and for others who look like her," Bassett wrote.
"Tina Turner showed others who lived in fear what a beautiful future filled with love, compassion, and freedom should look like. Her final words to me - for me - were 'You never mimicked me. Instead, you reached deep into your soul, found your inner Tina, and showed her to the world.' I shall hold these words close to my heart for the rest of my days. I am honored to have known Tina Turner.
"I am humbled to have helped show her to the world. So on today, while we mourn the loss of this iconic voice and presence, she gave us more than we could have ever asked. She gave us her whole self. And Tina Turner is a gift that that will always be 'simply the best.' Angels, sing thee to thy rest…Queen," she concluded.